Each year our AMEICO Team comes together to celebrate the end of the year.
This year, we went to the Franklin Roosevelt National Historic Site in Hyde Park, NY; the home of the 32nd President of the United States. This location was the birthplace, beloved lifelong home, and burial-place of FDR.
Everything in the home is fully preserved and mostly untouched. In the spirit of the season, the National Parks Service had the living room decorated for Christmas based on family records. On the second floor had FDR’s childhood bedroom, which he occupied as the eldest son, and subsequently his own sons occupied whenever they were the eldest in the home. A notable feature was a nearly hidden hand-pulled elevator which FDR used mostly in secret. Even the wheelchair ramp in the home was removable and fit over the stairs to protect FDR’s disability from the curious public. Our overall impression was that the home was cozy, intimate, and quietly grand.
The Franklin Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, operated by the National Archives, is a good review for monumental world events during FDR’s time in office. FDR was the first president to have the insight to form a Presidential Library, built in 1939 – 1940, through public donations. Since the library was open while he was still in office, it was quite common for him to be working quietly in the back office unbeknownst to visitors.
After his passing, the land was donated to the National Parks Service to preserve and grant access to the public for years to come, per FDR’s will.
“All that is within me cries out to go back to my home on the Hudson River” – FDR.
Neighboring the historic park: The Culinary Institute of America, also known as the CIA. Given our corporate affinity for good food, we felt it was a fitting place to celebrate. We had a lovely long lunch at The Bocuse Restaurant, staffed by students from the institute. Afterwards we went on a tour of the school and peeked into endless hallways lined with kitchens.
Ending the tour, we all posed in front of Lou’s Wall, the gastro-typographical-assemblage, made by Lou Dorfsman, former creative director at CBS– which graced their headquarters’ dining hall. This art piece was reputedly rescued from a dumpster, lovingly restored, and is the “piece de resistance” at the CIA.